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UAE announces over $1.6B in industrial projects including hydrogen plant

Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber made the announcements at the "Make it in the Emirates" forum in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.
Sultan Al Jaber

The UAE’s Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber on Wednesday announced more than 30 industrial projects worth over 6 billion dirhams ($1.63 billion), including the country’s first hydrogen electrolyzer plant, to produce green energy.

Jaber made the announcements at the "Make it in the Emirates" forum in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday. The event was organized by the Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology in partnership with the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), of which Jaber is also the chief executive officer.

The hydrogen electrolyzer plant will produce hydrogen, which can be used as a low-emission car power alternative to petrol. It will be the first facility of its type in the UAE.

Jaber said during the forum that an additional $2.7 billion of offtake agreements had been made in the UAE’s industrial sector, taking the total value of products targeted for localization to $32 billion.

Jaber said his company ADNOC would allocate more than 20 billion dirhams for the purchase of structures and metal products from national companies, Oil & Gas Middle East reported.

He added that competitive financing initiatives would be announced for the UAE’s industrial sector, including 5 billion dirhams from First Abu Dhabi Bank and 1 billion dirhams from Mashreq Bank, the outlet reported.

Jaber also said there would be 5,000 sustainable job opportunities for Emiratis in the industrial sector through the country’s Industrialist Program, which has been supported by Nafis (the Emirati Talent Competitiveness Council) and the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization.

“One of the key achievements of last year’s forum was several leading national companies announcing their intention to invest 110 billion dirhams over the next decade to purchase 300 products from local manufacturers,” Jaber said.

“I am pleased to share with you that in the first year alone, 28% of these offtake agreements have been implemented, representing a total value of 31 billion dirhams.”

Discussing the industrial sector’s role in reducing carbon dioxide emissions, Jaber said, “It is our sector’s paramount responsibility to demonstrate the feasibility of working concurrently toward two objectives: reducing emissions and achieving sustainable growth.”

“With this in mind, this year’s forum is centered around bolstering sustainable practices and promoting the adoption of clean energy solutions within the industrial sector,” he added.

Jaber has been appointed as president of the COP28 UN climate conference that will be hosted in Dubai in November. Given that he is the CEO of one of the world's biggest oil companies, his appointment has attracted some criticism. His defenders argue that he is well-placed to oversee the negotiations given that he also is chairman of UAE renewables company Masdar. 

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